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Friday, January 07, 2005

Is Iran going to try and Steal the Iraqi Election?

The January 30th Iraqi elections are going to occur. However, "in what capacity?" seems to be a valid question. Yesterday, the Iraqi Defense Minister Hazem Shaalan insisted that Iran has deluged Iraq with over 1 Million Iranian Shiites posing as Iraqis so as to skew the election results to a representation more beneficial to Iran.


Iraq’s DM: Over a million Shiites entered Iraq from Iran Thu. 6 Jan 2005
January 6, 2005
Iran Focus


Baghdad, Jan. 06 - Iraq’s Defence Minister Hazem Shaalan scolded Iran on the eve of the meeting by the Foreign Ministers of Iraq’s neighbouring countries in Amman and said that over a million Iranians had entered the country to pose as Iraqis in the upcoming January 30th elections.

In an interview with the Kuwaiti daily Al-Qabas yesterday, Shaalan repeated his previous assertions and accused the Iranian regime of, “interfering (in Iraq) with money, guns, and intelligence”.

The defence chief warned of the threat posed by a future Iranian-backed Iraqi government.

“It is estimated that the minimum that Iran wants is to dominate southern Iraq”, Shaalan said in response to a question on the extent of Iranian infiltration.

“If we go to Basra, we will not hear an Arabic accent, rather we will hear a Farsi accent, and this is also true of Najaf and Al-Kut provinces … This is a sign of significant meddling since it shows how open Iran’s borders are”, he said.
( continued )

Additionally, today, Iranian officials stated that they have 500,000 more individuals in their country that are eligible to vote in the upcoming Iraqi elections. In order to assist these "Iraqi Nationals" Iran informed that they would be setting up voting booths in Tehran, Qom, West-Azerbaijan, Kermanshah, Khuzistan, and Khorassan provinces. Seems to me that Iran has resigned themselves to the fact that the elections will take place. Now, they are attempting to install a Shiite dominated government sympathetic to their causes.

What a wonderful opportunity to send Jimmy Carter to Iran to oversee the polls. I'm sure they would offer a warm welcome.


Over half a million Iraqi voters in Iran: Official
Fri. 7 Jan 2005
Iran Focus


Tehran, Jan. 07 - Iran announced there are at least half a million Iraqis presently in the country eligible to vote in the upcoming January 30th election in Iraq.

“More than 500,000 Iraqis residing in Iran can take part in (Iraq’s) January elections”, Ahmad Hosseini, the head of Foreign Citizens Office of the Interior Ministry, said on Wednesday.

Hosseini said that following an agreement with International Immigration Organisation, his organisation would oversee the vote.

Voting booths will be setup in Tehran, Qom, West-Azerbaijan, Kermanshah, Khuzistan, and Khorassan provinces, he added.

Any Iraqi born before December 31, 1986, with a valid identity card at registration offices will be able to vote in the booths according to Hosseini. He added that Iraqis, living abroad and not currently in possession of a valid identity card, were also eligible to vote provided that they could prove their status.

Many international experts have expressed anxiety over possible electoral fraud in the clerical state, cautioning that the Iranian regime was hoping to install a pro-Iran Shiite government through election rigging.
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